Healthy Eating

We're championing fresh food that packs a flavour punch, from salads and vegetable-packed bowls to grains and light desserts.

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Aløft

There's nothing new about Nordic interiors - blond timbers, concrete surfaces, warm, mid-century charm without the twee - and thank heavens for that. It's a style that augments the beauty of everything around it, in this case, gorgeous Hobart harbour, which makes up one whole wall. What is new here, however, is the food - by veterans of Garagistes, which once dazzled diners down the road, Vue de Monde in Melbourne and Gordon Ramsay worldwide. There's a strong Asian bent, but with Tasmanian ingredients. In fact, the kitchen's love of the local verges on obsessive - coconut milk in an aromatic fish curry is replaced with Tasmanian-grown fig leaf simmered in cream to mimic the flavour. Other standouts include a gutsy red-braised lamb with gai lan and chewy cassia spaetzle, pigs' ears zingy with Sichuan pepper and a fresh, springy berry dessert. While the food is sourced locally, the generous wine list spans the planet. 

Secret Tuscany

A far cry from Tuscany’s familiar gently rolling hills, Monte Argentario’s appealing mix of mountain, ocean, island and lagoon makes it one of Italy’s hidden treasures, writes Emiko Davies.

A festival of cheese hits Sydney

Kick off winter with a week of cheese tasting.

Farro recipes

Farro can be used in almost any dish, from a robust salad to accompany hearty beer-glazed beef short ribs to a new take on risotto with mushrooms, leek and parmesan. Here are 14 ways with this versatile grain.

Brae

Prepare to enter a picture of the countryside framed by note-perfect Australiana but painted in bold, elegant and unsentimental strokes. Over 10 or more courses, Dan Hunter celebrates his region with dishes that are formally daring (Crunchy prawn heads! Creamy oyster soft-serve! Sea urchin and chicory bread pudding!), yet rich in flavour and substance. The menu could benefit from an edit, but the plates are tightly composed - and what could you cut? Certainly not the limpid broth bathing fronds of abalone and calamari, nor the clever arrangement of lobster played off against charred waxy fingerlings under a swatch of milk skin. The adventure is significantly the richer for the cool gloss of the dining room, some of the most engaging service in the nation and wine pairings that roam with an easy-going confidence. Maturing and relaxing without surrendering a drop of its ambition, Brae is more compelling than ever.

Grilled apricot salad with jamon and Manchego

Here we've scorched apricots on the grill and served them with torn jamon, shaved Manchego and peppery rocket leaves. Think of it as a twist on the good old melon-prosciutto routine. The mixture would also be great served on charred sourdough.

Discovering Macedonia

Like its oft-disputed name, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia defies simple definition but its rich diversity extends from the dinner table to the welcoming locals, writes Richard Cooke.

2017 Australian Hotel Awards: The Finalists

This year's finalists across 11 different categories include established and new hotels, all with particular areas of excellence. Stay tuned to find out which hotels will take the top spots when they're announced at a ceremony at QT Melbourne on Wednesday 24 May, and published in our 2017 Australian Hotel Guide, on sale Thursday 25 May.

How to grow coriander

Ceviche toasts with avocado and coriander

Ceviche toasts with avocado and coriander

Coriander, or cilantro as it’s known in the Americas, can be tricky, but a little know-how goes a long way towards success, writes Mat Pember.

Coriander is among is one of the most polarising plants in the patch, eliciting equally passionate responses of both love and hatred among food-lovers and gardeners alike. When growing coriander, it can sometimes feel like you're in a tumultuous relationship. But have you ever considered whether perhaps coriander isn't the difficult one, but rather the grower might be the issue? We need to stop trying to change coriander, and instead try to understand it better, appreciate it for what it has to offer. And it has so much.

The first step in understanding coriander is knowing when to plant it. Despite some marketing attempts to promote "slow-bolting" varieties, the fact is that when you plant coriander in summer or the warmer end of spring, all varieties want to bolt to seed. Now, in the cool of early winter, is a better time to plant this herb. It will appreciate as much sunlight as you can offer, but don't be concerned by a lack of direct sun; even filtered light will assist growth. In cooler areas, however, protect the plants from frost by keeping them indoors at night.

Recipe for green rice pilaf with coriander and onions.

Because we're growing coriander for its leaves - for now - nitrogen is in highest demand. Compost integrated into free-draining soil will meet the plant's needs here. In containers, always use good potting mix and ensure there's adequate drainage.

Coriander seeds are hard-coated, so soak them in water overnight before planting them to aid germination, and scatter them to a depth of about a centimetre. While close planting won't be an issue, a lack of moisture will be. This is the next part of better understanding coriander.

Water is important in maintaining a stable relationship, so keep the soil moist. We've found coriander to be perfectly suited to wicking beds which draw water up from a reservoir to maintain moisture levels in the soil. A lack of water stresses out the plants and even "slow-bolting" varieties will bolt to seed.

Once the seeds have germinated - around seven to 10 days after sowing - water every other day or as the weather demands: gently poke around in the soil to check moisture levels, and if you hit moisture at less than a knuckle deep it's fine; any deeper, you need to add water.

Recipe for ceviche toasts with coriander and avocado.

Around a month in, you should have a thin green blanket of coriander leaves, but picking is still a little way off; another month of growth, and you'll be making that longed-for Thai curry. When harvesting, remove the tops of the herb with scissors, leaving enough foliage on the plant to keep production rolling. Coriander won't burst into a glut stage and inundate you with produce, so if your demand is high, grow multiple plants.

The herb will continue to produce for another couple of months before it begins its decline. As an annual plant, it will only last a season - another opportunity to appreciate it while it's around.

The final step in understanding coriander is to know its phases of production. As the plant bolts to seed, flowers will develop; these add a more pungent flavour to dishes than the leaves and picking them encourage more to grow. A month later comes the penultimate phase of production: going to seed.

By now your plants may have given in to aphids, but this won't affect seed development. Let the pods dry on the plant before picking them for your spice rack. At this point, there's no point leaving the plants in the ground, so remove them reveal the final phase of production: the roots.

Love it or hate it, coriander without doubt has much to offer.

WHAT TO PLANT IN

 

Temperate:

Beetroot seed

Bok Choy/Pak Choy seedling

Broad Beans seedling

Broccoli seedling

Carrot seed

Celery seedling

Coriander seedling

Fennel seedling

Garlic bulbs

Herbs (all except basil) seedling

Kale seedling

Lettuce seedling

Parsnip seed

Rocket seedling

Silverbeet seedling

Spinach seedling

Spring Onion seedling

Strawberry seedling

Swede seed

Turnip seed

WHAT TO PLANT IN

 

Temperate:

Beetroot seed

Bok Choy/Pak Choy seedling

Broad Beans seedling

Broccoli seedling

Carrot seed

Celery seedling

Coriander seedling

Fennel seedling

Garlic bulbs

Herbs (all except basil) seedling

Kale seedling

Lettuce seedling

Parsnip seed

Rocket seedling

Silverbeet seedling

Spinach seedling

Spring Onion seedling

Strawberry seedling

Swede seed

Turnip seed

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